Health Benefits of Lemon
Lemon is a citrus fruit with a thick rind and soft, edible interior. It can be consumed in many ways, fresh or processed, but mostly in the form of lemonade, lemon water, or like any ordinary fruit. Peel is edible, too, and is often used for adding flavor to cookies, cakes and other food.
Lemon is a good source of some vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other beneficial compounds and its consumption can lead to better health.
How much vitamin C is in a Lemon?
Nutritional content of raw lemon and lemon juice varies depending on the lemon variety, season, growing conditions and similar, but general values are given in the following table:
|Vitamin C||~80 mg||~50 mg|
So, on average, 100g of lemon contains around 80mg of vitamin C, while 100g of lemon juice contains around 50mg of vitamin C. Vitamin C RDA for adult person is ~60mg of vitamin C. Lemons are also decent source of potassium and vitamin B6.
Also, lemon contains 13 mg of copper, 12 mg of phytosterols and other beneficial compounds. Note that lemons don't contain cholesterol and that it is very low on sodium (3 mg per 100g of fruit).
Lemon can be consumed as:
- fruit - peel it off and eat it. This is the best way to consume the lemon in order to fully benefit from it.
- lemon juice - lemon juice is squeezed using hand or some sort of juicer (hand juicer, citrus juicer, masticating juicer, countertop juicer etc.) and consumed as pure lemon juice or mixed with some other fruit juice (my preferred choice is juice containing 2-3 lemons and one orange, with no water or sugar added).
- lemonade - lemon juice diluted with some water, with or without added sugar or some other sweetener.
- lemon water - lemon water is sometimes considered as 'very diluted lemon juice', but it is made using lemon juice and lemon peel, thus it contains compounds that are found in peel, too. Note that if you are going to use lemon peel as food, be sure to use home grown lemons and/or organically grown lemons. Lemon peel from chemically treated lemons is not recommended for consumption.
Lemon health benefits include, among others: a post-workout drink, alkalizes the body, asthma treatment, balances blood sugar levels, balances pH levels, brain food, caffeine replacement, detoxifies the body, dissolves phlegm, fight cancer cells, heart food, helps hydrate the body, helps treat constipation, helps treat scurvy, improves eyesight, improves metabolism and promotes weight loss, improves digestive health, kills free radicals, kills worms, lowers high blood pressure, prevents bad breath, promote healthy skin, reduces uric acid and inflammation, treads and prevent kidney stones, improves liver health etc.
Obviously, lemon is great food, but it is not wonder plant or wonder fruit - there is no such food. However, its regular consumption is highly recommended. After all, just a 100g of lemon provides daily dose of vitamin C for an adult. There are fruits and vegetables that are richer in vitamin C than lemons, but personally, when I drink lemon juice (no sugar added), I feel it from my head to my toes. And such 40-50 kcal glass of juice can postpone my next meal by at least an hour or two. Excellent! And it is so easy to grow in the backyard or at home :)